Beekeeping, Gardening and Quilting in Eastern Wake County, North Carolina

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Prehistoric Turtle

Oh the things we find at the river - there's always something and it always seems to be bigger! This turtle was huge and Lily was a little surprised to say the least.

And we had to play in the river - I'll just tell you , we both had a good time!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Hive #6

A week ago, Steve came over and we checked on the hives.
Hive #6 - no sign of a queen so we took 2 frames of brood from Nuc #1 and hope they will make a queen.
Also checked to see how much capped honey the bees had made. Several beekeepers have already said the honey flow was less than last year. I don't think I'll have as much either. I do plan on leaving 1 full super on each hive plus the double brood boxes. And they have to finish out the summer - hot, dry weather coming up - last year was hard on the bees after the nectar flow.
So my plan for this week is to take off the honey (this week) but as I've mentioned in the past, I really have to get psyched up for this but it is cooler thank goodness.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Cukes and Little Tomatoes

Cucumbers in the garden have blossoms

and little cukes and are growing up the fence.

I have two tomato plants in another area - cherry tomatoes and sungold which is a small sweet yellow tomato.

They have small tomatoes on them now and are full of blossoms.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Swarm Hive - Adding On

I still had lots of bees outside the Swarm Hive and even though it's been hot, none of the other hives have been hanging out on the front porch. So Monday, I opened this hive to see if I could figure out what's going on.

Well, they were out of room! The super was full of honey and bees. I added the empty super from Hive #6. I didn't check anything - just added the empty super.

What a difference - this was not ten minutes later. So they just needed some more space.

This hive is full and I mean full of bees!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Hive #6 - Repair Work

Back of Hive #6 - a large gap between the brood box and top super.

Repair work complete - duct tape is like a wonder drug - you can use it for anything. The best part is when I open this hive again, it's easy to reuse the tape. I probably should get white now that they have duct tape in colors.

I may have mentioned this before but one of the best beekeepers I know uses duct tape on a regular basis. When I first saw his hives, I thought there's no way I'll ever put duct tape on my hives! Well, you know that saying - you should never say never.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Hive #6

I opened Hive #6 on Monday morning - they have the fewest bees going in and out and things just haven't looked right for a while. This is the hive that we took a nuc from and where the swarm hive originated. You can see several open queen cells on this frame.

This hive had two brood boxes and two supers - I took one of the supers off - they had not filled either of the supers and still had several frames in the top brood box that were empty - thank goodness, no wax moths. I didn't check in the bottom brood box - I'll want a little help for that but it looked full. When I open this hive again, I might take the super off and only leave them with empty space in the second brood box.

I might need to requeen which I've been very unsuccessful doing in the past. We'll see.

Monday, June 15, 2009

To Be a Bee

Q: What is a honeybee swarm?

A: A swarm consists of the old queen, a few drones, and thousands of worker bees that leave the original colony, usually because of overcrowding. The group settles on a tree branch or other object until worker bee scouts can find a suitable nesting site.

To Be a Bee from The Old Farmer's Almanac 2009 Gardening Calendar June

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Flag Day and Quilts

In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation that officially established June 14 as Flag Day to commemorate the adoption of the flag of the United States. The longest-running Flag Day parade is held annually in Quincy, Massachusetts, which began in 1952 and will celebrate its 59th year in 2009.

The largest Flag Day parade is held annually in Troy, New York, which bases its parade on the Quincy parade and typically draws 50,000 spectators.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Joe-Pye Weed

Joe-Pye Weed, Eupatorium purpureum, is an herb, a wildflower, a butterfly plant and an ornamental for the flower bed. It obtained its name after a Native American herbalist, named Joe-Pye, who cured fevers using the Eupatorium plant.
Though we tend to think of it as a wildflower in the U.S., it's long been an ornamental plant in England where cottage gardens are so popular. The stalks are hollow and will fall over if not sheltered from the wind. It blooms from now till frost.
Joe-Pye is known by the common names Queen of the Meadow, gravel root, kidney root, mist-flower, snakeroot and purple boneset.
When I redid my garden space this year, my Joe-Pye plants got more space and some are getting really tall. Just a few are blooming right now but you can see the bees love this plant.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


Looking out at those pesky squirrels! They're all over the yard and we've got more than ever this year.

Lily gets lots of exercise going in and out of the house when she sees them out the window. She barks at them and chases them up the trees but they know they're safe.

Lily had a birthday recently - 3 years old.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Full Strawberry Moon

Full Strawberry Moon - June

This name was universal to every Algonquin tribe. However, in Europe they called it the Rose Moon. Also because the relatively short season for harvesting strawberries comes each year during the month of June . . . so the full Moon that occurs during that month was christened for the strawberry!

Saturday, June 6, 2009


Rainy Thursday night and Friday.
In the garden, the biggest daylily - it's about 5" across. Just beautiful.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Brushy Mountain E-Newsletter

This was in the newsletter from Brushy Mountain Bee Farm I just received - so, so true.
The spring flow has been terrible this year. Any reserves are quickly consumed when the bees are house bound by all the rain and cool weather. Once this weather pattern breaks watch for swarms. They are crowded in a hive by the weather with nothing to do, so "hey lets make swarm cells". O.K., this is an over-simplification and imposes human traits/characters on the bees, but you get the point. This time of year there a spike in swarming activity after several days of rain.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

The Beeyard - June

The Beeyard - June, 2009

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

More Symposium Quilts

I'm a great admirer of hand applique. These photos don't do these quilts justice - the work was exquisite.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Symposium Quilts

There were so many beautiful quilts - these wallhangings are just a few examples of the extraordinary work.